Stomach Cancer Oncology Rehabilitation
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Video: Oncology RehabilitationOncology Rehabilitation
Oncology rehabilitation can help cancer patients stay physically strong so they can better tolerate treatments such as chemotherapy and continue to participate in everyday activities.
Oncology Rehabilitation for Stomach Cancer
At Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA), oncology rehabilitation is an important part of our stomach cancer patients’ recovery process. Our rehabilitation therapists (including physical therapists and occupational therapists) work one-on-one with patients to help them regain strength and endurance. The education, assistance and training these oncology rehab therapists provide can help you improve mobility and minimize abdominal discomfort.
Some of the physical challenges stomach cancer patients face that the CTCA oncology rehabilitation team is experienced in helping patients deal with include:
- Guarded posture
- Difficulty with mobility due to abdominal discomfort
- Difficulty with diaphragmatic breathing/respiratory concerns
- Difficulty with activities of daily living
You can work with a rehabilitation therapist to build a personalized exercise program consisting of light resistance exercises and range-of-motion training. Your oncology rehabilitation therapist’s goals with the exercise program are to:
- Show you how to practice diaphragmatic (abdominal) breathing
- Teach you postural exercises to help you distribute your weight more equally and reduce abdominal discomfort
- Minimize fatigue, stress, anxiety and depression
- Improve your overall mobility
- Optimize your physical function, safety and well-being
- Boost your immune system
Your oncology rehabilitation therapist can also teach you energy conservation and work on simplification techniques so you can complete tasks without becoming overly fatigued. Additionally, he or she can alleviate pain and discomfort associated with edema, which is swelling caused by excess fluid in the abdomen or tissues in other areas of your body. Your rehabilitation therapist can use special massage techniques, gentle stretching exercises and compression garments or pumps to help reduce the swelling.
Our oncology rehab therapists also employ therapies to offset side effects of chemotherapy for stomach cancer.
Acupuncture – Acupuncture promotes natural healing and can improve functioning of your body. To administer this therapy, very thin needles are inserted through your skin at precise points on your body. Acupuncture can:
- Help you feel less fatigued
- Alleviate nausea and vomiting
- Resolve constipation or diarrhea
- Lessen pain and discomfort
- Reduce stress and anxiety
- Aid in preparation for and recovery from stomach cancer surgery
- Combat altered nerve sensation and decreased movement
ReBuilder® – Neuropathic pain (i.e., a sense of numbness or tingling in the hands and feet) can be a side effect of stomach cancer chemotherapy. To help address this, your rehabilitation therapist may use an innovative tool called the ReBuilder. It sends mild electrical pulses to your feet and legs, which can minimize neuropathic pain and help nerves in your limbs function better.
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